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Hi. I'm a Unix Administrator, mathematics enthusiast, and amateur philosopher. This is where I rant about that which upsets me, laugh about that which amuses me, and jabber about that which holds my interest most: Unix.
Old

I can hear that train a'comin'

Posted 02-01-2011 at 03:42 PM by rocket357 (Musings on technology, philosophy, and life in the corporate world)

A few months ago the execs where I work gave me a new project. I was to take Version 4.0 of our flagship product and gather all of the performance data collected since 2003 (the beginning of time, as far as Version 4.0 is concerned) so I can run reports on it. Most importantly, I could run reports on *recent* performance data...and give the report to exec.

Ok, I'm cool with that. I have nothing to hide. I work late hours to finish up the report, and it's a smashing success. So...
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Old

PostgreSQL and Indexes: a formula for...disaster?

Posted 01-27-2011 at 12:03 PM by rocket357 (Musings on technology, philosophy, and life in the corporate world)
Updated 01-29-2011 at 03:41 PM by rocket357

I've noticed a ton of complaining about PostgreSQL's apparent lack of sanity when it comes to index usage, so I'd like to throw a few things out that explain the "idiotic" way PostgreSQL handles indexes.

First things first. If the table fits in a single page, YOU ARE NOT GOING TO SEE INDEX ACTIVITY. That gets more people than any other issue. If the table has 17 rows, don't expect PostgreSQL to bother with indexes. Using an index on a table that fits in a single page...
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Old

minimalism++?

Posted 01-05-2011 at 11:46 AM by rocket357 (Musings on technology, philosophy, and life in the corporate world)

Years ago I discovered fluxbox and gave it a try. Until that point, I was a pretty devote KDE user. Fluxbox amazed me with how lightweight yet *powerful* and *configurable* it was. I had a FreeBSD/fluxbox screenshot on putfile.com that got more hits than virtually any other desktop environment I'd posted there. It's fast, light, and given the time and effort to tweak it just right, it's damned pretty, too. I entered into this new concept of minimalism...getting the same work done with half...
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Old

Kindle for PC? Why do you mock me?!?!

Posted 12-29-2010 at 09:50 AM by rocket357 (Musings on technology, philosophy, and life in the corporate world)

Last night I decided to try out Kindle for PC (I'm thinking about purchasing an ebook reader and I'm having trouble deciding between the "liquid ink"-based Kindle and the touchscreen LCD nook). I get the PC software up and running on my WinXP machine at home, and make a startling discovery...Books in the "Popular Classics" section of the Kindle Store are...wait for it...completely free! Every page had half a dozen or so books that make me go "Hey! I remember reading that...
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Old

Fun with prime numbers

Posted 12-28-2010 at 03:26 PM by rocket357 (Musings on technology, philosophy, and life in the corporate world)
Updated 12-28-2010 at 04:34 PM by rocket357

When I was in college I wrote a silly benchmark to test different programming languages. The task was to brute-force calculate the first 150,000 prime numbers. I wrote the program in C, C++, Java, Perl, and Python. I fudged an optimization on them all (the optimization: only run division calculations up to sqrt(n) for a given prime candidate n...since sqrt is costly to calculate, I used n/3 (a horrid estimate, I know...but it still cuts out quite a few tests)). Recently I got a chance to discuss...
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